Our series on essential tools for small business owners continues with a guest post from our very own Email Marketing Manager, Erin King. A good email marketing program is an essential tool for growing your small business and increasing your revenue. The first step? Finding the right Email Service Provider, or ESP. Follow Erin’s advice, and your program is sure to be a success.

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Emailing family and friends is second nature for most of us, but sending an email on behalf of your business is a different playing field entirely.  Not only do you want a slick email design to attract customers, but there are government guidelines that dictate what you can and cannot send.  No need to be overwhelmed, though — an email service provider, or ESP, can help you navigate these challenges.

At its simplest, an email service provider enables you to quickly send emails to a large number of people at once, but it can do much more.  Here are three key areas where using an ESP outweighs doing it on your own.

Easy Email Creation

When it comes to commercial emails, design matters. But you don’t have to be a seasoned web designer to create an eye-catching email. Many ESPs offer readymade templates that you can use to easily create an email. In addition, your ESP has years of experience with what does and does not work in emails, and can help direct you in creating the best design possible.

Track Your Clicks

After you design and send out your email, you’ll want to see how customers respond to it — this is a huge benefit of an ESP’s open and click tracking.  If your email isn’t being opened, your subject may not be relevant to customers, and you can reconsider your content.  If users are clicking most on one specific link, that may indicate that they’re interested in that content, and you can tailor future emails to focus more on that subject.

Combat Spam

Governments around the globe have strict regulations concerning spam email.  An ESP will help you make sure your emails are in compliance with spam regulations by processing users who unsubscribe from your emails, and usually will assist you if an email client (like Hotmail or Gmail) blocks your emails due to spam.

 ESP Options

There are many different ESPs out there; using the criteria here, you can begin to explore and see which one works best for your needs.  A few good options where you can begin your search are MailChimp, ConstantContact, and Bronto.

Once you’ve found the right ESP for you, you’ll be well on your way to creating emails that will engage your customers and make them want to purchase from you again and again.

About the Author: Erin King is the Email Marketing Manager at Webs, where she oversees the email program and manages the inner workings of our email service provider. 

Read The Series: Your Small Business Toolkit

Your Small Business Toolkit [INFOGRAPHIC]
Quality Tools for Quality Communication
How To Get More Website Clicks with Heatmapping Tools
Helpful Google Tools for Your Small Business Website
Let’s Be Practical: Organization For Your Small Business
Photo Editing Options For Small Business Owners
Tools For Small Business Owners with Something to Sell
New Social Media Management Tool from Pagemodo
Getting Started with Email: You Need Professional Help
Tools For Driving Traffic: Make Your Own Infographics!
Your Most Important Tool: A Small Business Website
Your Small Business Toolkit: Resources for Busy Entrepreneurs

One Response

  1. Reply
    Herman
    Mar 31, 2013 - 02:41 AM

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